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AGM-88 HARM[1]
AGM-88 HARM on FA-18C
An AGM-88 HARM missile loaded aboard an F/A-18C
Type Air-to-surface anti-radiation missile
Place of origin United States
Service history
In service 1985–present
Used by U.S. and others
Wars Gulf War, Kosovo War, Iraq War, 2011 military intervention in Libya
Production history
Designer Texas Instruments
Designed 1983
Manufacturer Texas Instruments, then Raytheon Corporation
Unit cost US$284,000
US$870,000 for AGM-88E[2]
Produced 1983–present
Weight 355 kilograms (783 lb)
Length 4.1 metres (13 ft)
Diameter 254 millimetres (10.0 in)

Warhead WDU-21/B blast-fragmentation in a WAU-7/B warhead section, and later WDU-37/B blast-fragmentation warhead.
Warhead weight 66 kilograms (146 lb)
FMU-111/B laser proximity fuze

Engine Thiokol SR113-TC-1 dual-thrust rocket engine
Wingspan 1.1 metres (3.6 ft)
Propellant Solid fuel
106 kilometres; 66 miles (57 nmi)
Speed 2,280 kilometres per hour (1,420 mph)
Passive radar homing with home-on-jam,GPS/INS and EHF active radar homing in E variant.[3] 500-20,000 MHz for AGM-88C
F/A-18, F-4G, F-16, Tornado IDS, F-35 and others

The AGM-88 High-speed Anti-Radiation Missile (HARM) is a tactical, air-to-surface missile designed to home in on electronic transmissions coming from surface-to-air radar systems. It was originally developed by Texas Instruments as a replacement for the AGM-45 Shrike and AGM-78 Standard ARM system. Production was later taken over by Raytheon Corporation when it purchased the defense production business of Texas Instruments.


The AGM-88 can detect, attack and destroy a radar antenna or transmitter with minimal aircrew input. The proportional guidance system that homes in on enemy radar emissions has a fixed antenna and seeker head in the missile's nose. A smokeless, solid-propellant, booster-sustainer rocket motor propels the missile at speeds over Mach 2. HARM, a Navy-led program, was initially integrated onto the A-6E, A-7 and F/A-18 and later onto the EA-6B. RDT&E for use on the F-14 was begun, but not completed. The Air Force introduced HARM on the F-4G Wild Weasel and later on specialized F-16s equipped with the HARM Targeting System (HTS).



The HARM missile was approved for full production in March 1983, and then deployed in late 1985 with VA-72 and VA-46 aboard the aircraft carrier USS America. It was soon used in combat—in March 1986 against a Libyan SA-5 site in the Gulf of Sidra, and then Operation Eldorado Canyon in April. HARM was used extensively by the United States Navy and the United States Air Force for Operation Desert Storm during the Gulf War of 1991.

During the Gulf War, the HARM was involved in a friendly fire incident when the pilot of an F-4G Wild Weasel escorting a B-52 bomber mistook the latter's tail gun radar for an Iraqi AAA site. (This was after the tail gunner of the B-52 had targeted the F-4G, mistaking it for an Iraqi MiG.) The F-4 pilot launched the missile and then saw that the target was the B-52, which was hit. It survived with shrapnel damage to the tail and no casualties. The B-52 was subsequently renamed In HARM's Way.[4]

"Magnum" is spoken over the radio to announce the launch of an AGM-88.[5] During the Gulf War, if an aircraft was illuminated by enemy radar a bogus "Magnum" call on the radio was often enough to convince the operators to power down.[6] This technique would also be employed in Serbia during air operations in 1999.

In 2013 President Obama offered the AGM-88 to Israel for the first time.[7]


AGM-88E HARM p1230047


The newest upgrade is a joint venture by the Italian Ministry of Defense and the US Department of Defense: the AGM-88E Advanced Anti-Radiation Guided Missile (AARGM), produced by Alliant Techsystems.

In November 2005, the Italian Ministry of Defense and the US Department of Defense signed a Memorandum of Agreement on the joint development of the AGM-88E AARGM missile. Italy was providing $20 million of developmental funding as well as several millions worth material, equipment and related services. The Italian Air Force was expected to procure up to 250 missiles for its Tornado ECR aircraft. Thus flight test program was set to integrate the AARGM onto Tornado ECR's weapon system.

The AARGM features the latest software, enhanced capabilities intended to counter radar shutdown and passive radar using an additional active millimeter wave seeker. It was released in November 2010.

The Navy demonstrated the AARGM's capability during Initial Operational Test and Evaluation (IOT&E) in spring 2012 with 12 live firing of the missiles. Aircrew and maintenance training with live missiles were completed in June. The Navy authorized Full-Rate Production (FRP) of the AARGM in August 2012, with 72 missiles for the Navy and nine for the Italian Air Force to be delivered in 2013. A U.S. Marine Corps F/A-18 Hornet squadron will be the first forward-deployed unit with the AGM-88E.[8]

It will be initially integrated onto the FA-18C/D, FA-18E/F, EA-18G, and Tornado ECR aircraft and later on the F-35.[9]

In September 2013, ATK delivered the 100th AARGM to the U.S. Navy. The AGM-88E program is on schedule and on budget, with Full Operational Capability (FOC) planned for September 2014.[10]

See alsoEdit

AIM-9 AIM-120 and AGM-88 on F-16C

F-16 carrying an AIM-120 AMRAAM (top), AIM-9 Sidewinder (middle) and AGM-88 HARM



External linksEdit

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